SALT LAKE CITY – The Mormon church says it doesn't support a wealthy Mormon businessman's push to build sustainable, futuristic communities near religious landmarks in Utah and Vermont inspired by founder Joseph Smith's plans from 1833.
Eric Hawkins, spokesman for The Church of Jesus Christ of Christ of Latter-day Saints, said in a statement this week that officials have concerns about the developments affecting existing neighborhoods and the longstanding relationships the religion has with those residents.
Developer David Hall is unfazed, saying he's not surprised by the opposition because he believes church leaders have never been forward-thinking.
Hall's plans are years away from reaching fruition in Utah and decades in Vermont.
But neighbors in both states already have expressed concerns about the communities drastically changing their areas.